Woman Wants Ankle Monitor Off
By Wheeler Cowperthwaite
SUN Staff Writer
The woman who allegedly doused her husband’s head in kerosene and lit him on fire, is asking the judge in her case to let her off of house arrest.
Layla Coriz, 43, of Chimayó, has been on house arrest since she was released from jail, March 22. She had previously been released on March 15, then re-arrested, because the electronic monitoring company alleged she was responsible for her husband showing up at the jail to pick her up.
This is allegedly a violation of the conditions of her release, which included the provision that she have no contact with her husband, the alleged victim in the case.
Electronic monitoring means suspects, with the exception of allowances for work or church, must stay within a certain range of their home.
“Due to the negligence of the initial electric monitoring company, OR Communications, defendant was once again incarcerated and then released once the Court was informed of the aforementioned negligence,” her lawyer, Roderick Thompson, wrote in a motion to have her released from the monitoring program.
He filed that motion, as well as a request for the motion to be set for a hearing, on May 11.
During the March 14 arraignment, after she was bound over on a charge of aggravated battery causing substantial bodily harm, her husband James Coriz asked that the no-contact order between the pair be lifted.
When she was re-arrested, it was alleged she had violated that order.
Electronic monitoring, which usually entails the installation of a GPS monitor, allows the monitors to know where the person is. She is currently being monitored through Santa Fe County’s monitoring program.
“Defendant is currently paying approximately $140.00 (one hundred and forty dollars) per week,” Thompson wrote. “This amount is DOUBLE what Defendant would have paid in Rio Arriba County.”
Layla Coriz is currently paying $560 a month.
He alleged that Layla Coriz is being punished for a situation she did not create.
Thompson previously asked First Judicial District Judge Jennifer Attrep to remove Layla Coriz from the electric monitoring on May 3, but Attrep told him to file a written motion.
“The Court, however, did order that Defendant could switch to the other EM company in Espanola,” he wrote. “Unfortunately, this company is not taking applicants at this time. Nonetheless, $70.00 per week is still a great and undue burden on my client who makes a near minimum wage salary.”
At that rate, she would be paying $280 a month, compared to the $560 a month she’s currently paying through the Santa Fe company.
Prosecutor Phillip Sanchez said during the arraignment that he was opposed to the no-contact order being lifted because, if the pair were allowed to openly talk to each other, James Coriz’s testimony would continue to change.
Attrep said during the arraignment that the “drastic change” in James Coriz’s account of the alleged attack, between his first statements to police and his testimony during the preliminary hearing, means the prosecutor’s worries about a further change in his story are legitimate.
If she were released from the electronic monitoring, there would be nothing monitoring her movements or way to tell if she visited restricted areas, such as her husband’s residence. She is currently in the third-party custody of Roberto Espino.